Fatherhood Initiative Program to begin this month

Published 7:00 am Friday, September 15, 2017

Recently, Picayune Early Head Start launched its newest program to benefit more than just the children.
The Fatherhood Initiative Program is an effort to help fathers become more engaged in their children’s upbringing. Designed by Early Head Start employee Mark Fluker, the eight-week program is a complete curriculum that teaches father figures how to support their children through infancy and adolescence. It also helps relieve a father’s skepticism of if they are providing as much as they possibly can for their children.
Throughout the program, Fluker said he hopes more than just biological fathers participate in the events and lessons, which start Sept. 27.
“This program is for all father figures,” Fluker said.
Father figures can include anyone that child looks up to.
“Fathers are a very important aspect of children’s lives and is one of the most difficult, yet most rewarding, jobs anyone could have along with being a mother,” he said.
Fluker said grandfathers, godfathers and even brothers who have taken the role of the father figure should attend.
“If a brother is looking after his little brothers, there is so much pressure, so many responsibilities and so little time to comprehend all of that at once,” he said.
The program allows father figures to learn how to provide children with the best opportunities to succeed in life, Fluker said.
On Sept. 27, the first lesson of the program will be “commitment,” which Fluker said is the first step to becoming a good father.
“This program isn’t just for new fathers or bad fathers, this program is for fathers that want to do more for their children; the fathers that want to commit to helping their children have the easiest and safest path to being successful. Through those lessons, maybe the children will learn how to become better fathers from realizing how much effort their father put in to making sure they had a good upbringing,” Fluker said.
Fluker said he thinks is the best part of the program is that the father figure will learn if they are doing the right things and if they are providing for their children.
Each monthly meeting will be held at 5 p.m. Picayune Early Head Start, located at 1620 Rosa St. in Picayune.
For more information about the program, call 601-799-4702.

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